Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ

May it please Thee, O Lord. to deliver me: for, poor wretch that I am, what can I do, and whither shall I go without Thee? How much the more difficult this is to me, so much the easier to Thee, is the change of the right hand of the Most High (Ps 76:2)

In spite of all the graces Heaven was showering upon me, I was far from deserving them. I had a great desire for virtue, but all that I did was full of imperfections. I was so sensitive that I was a very great trial to others; it was once and for all, and God worked this little miracle to make me grow up on a date I shall never forget: December 25, 1886. The newborn Child turned my darkness into light; having for my sake became small and weak, He made me strong and brave; He armed me with His own weapons, and after that I ran my course like a giant (Ps 18), going from victory to victory. The fountain of my tears was dried up, and very rarely flowed again. This is how I received the grace of conversion.....They still treated me at home like a baby, filling my shoes with presents and putting them by the fire-place on Christmas Eve. My father had always shared in my delight as I drew out each gift, but this year Our Lord wished to cure me of my childishness. As I went up to my room after midnight Mass, I heard my father say: "Therese is too big a girl for such nonsense ; I hope this will be the last year." The words cut me to the heart, and Celine, knowing my sensitiveness, begged me not to go down at once, as I would be sure to cry, but I was no longer the same, Jesus had changed my heart. I went down to the dining-room as though nothing had happened, and gaily pulled out the presents one by one, my father joining in the merriment. Celine thought that she was dreaming, but the fact remained that I had found once more the fortitude I had lost at the age of four and a half. On that blessed night the third period of my life opened, the most beautiful and full of graces. The work I had attempted for years, was done in an instant by Our Lord, who accepted my good will. Like the Apostles, I could say: Master, we have laboured all the night, and have taken nothing (Luke 5:5), but Our Lord did more for me than He did for them, for He cast the net Himself and drew me into a fisher of souls. Charity took possession of my soul and filled me with the spirit of self-forgetfulness, and from that time I was always happy. (St Therese, Story of a Soul)

Read whole post......

Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas Novena - 16-24 December, starts today, click for link

Read whole post......

Friday, December 13, 2013

St John of the Cross

Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you....I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them (St John 17:25-26)

O flame of the Holy Spirit that so intimately and tenderly pierces the substance of my soul and cauterizes it with Your glorious ardor! Previously, my requests did not reach Your ears, when, in the anxieties and weariness of love in which my sense and my spirit suffered because of considerable weakness, impurity, and lack of strong love, I was praying that You loose me and bring me to Yourself, because my soul longed for you, and impatient love did not allow me to be so confirmed to the conditions of this life in which You desired me still to live. The previous impulses of love were not enough, because they did not have sufficient quality for the attainment of my desire; now I am so fortified in love that not only do my sense and spirit no longer faint in You, but my heart and my flesh, reinforced in You, rejoice in the living God (Ps 83:3), with great conformity between the sensory and spiritual parts. What You desire me to ask for, I ask for, and what You do not desire, I do not desire, nor can I, nor does it even enter my mind to desire it. My petitions are now more valuable and estimable in Your sight, since they come from You, and You move me to make them, and I make them in the delight and joy of the Holy Spirit, my judgment now issuing from Your countenance (Ps 16:2), that is, when You esteem and hear my prayer. Tear then the thin veil of this life and do not let old age cut it naturally, that from now on I may love You with plenitude and fullness my soul desires forever and ever. (The Living Flame of Love, 1:36)

Toledo by El Greco. The view similar to that St John might see from the window of his cell while imprisoned in the Carmelite Monastery, Toledo. The main picture of St John is by Zurbaran  

Read whole post......

Friday, November 29, 2013

Feast of Immaculate Conception of Our Lady

O Lord, teach me to do Thy will, teach me to converse worthily and humbly in Thy sight; for Thou art my wisdom, who knowest me in Truth, and didst know me before the world was made, and before I was born in the world. (Imitation Bk 3:3)

Our Lady's unique privilege was her Immaculate Conception and divine Motherhood, and yet Our Lord tells us that whosoever shall do the will of my Father that is in heaven, he is my brother, and sister, and mother (Matt 12:15). it is well to speak of Mary's prerogatives but that is not enough, we must make her loved. If a sermon on her only calls forth "ohs"! and "ahs"! of admiration, it ends by being wearisome, and does not draw us to love and imitate her. (St Therese 'Novissima Verba')

Read whole post......

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

On the Love of God

They will seize and persecute you, they will hand you over to the synagogues and to prisons, and they will have you led before kings and governors because of my name. It will lead to your giving testimony. Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand, for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute. (Luke 21) 

O strong love of God! I really think nothing seems impossible to one who loves. O happy soul that has obtained this peace from its God! For it has become mistress over all the trials and perils of the world. If only it can serve its good Spouse and Lord, it fears none of them – and with good reason... Think of something which occurs to me now and which is applicable to those who are naturally pusillanimous and have little courage... Although in actual fact their soul has been raised up to this state, the weakness of their nature makes them afraid. We must be on the watch or this natural weakness will deprive us of a great crown. When you find yourselves as pusillanimous as this, my daughters, have recourse to faith and humility and do not fail to go forward with faith, for nothing is impossible to God (Lk 1,37). He has thus been able to give many holy saints the courage to endure all the cruel tortures which they had resolved to suffer for His sake! It is of this resolution and this free-will that the soul wishes to make Him Master, though He has no need of our efforts. Indeed, His Majesty is pleased that His works should shine forth in those who are weak, since in these there is more scope for His power and for the fulfilment of His desire to grant us favours... Pay no heed to the arguments adduced by your mind and your own weakness: this weakness will only grow if you begin to imagine what will and what will not happen...This is no time to think about your sins: leave them alone; humility is out of place now, it comes at the wrong time... Be assured that the Lord never forsakes those who love him and risk everything for his sake. (St Teresa of Jesus, ‘Conception of the Love of God’)
Read whole post......

Saturday, November 16, 2013

"Pray always without becoming weary"

Jesus told his disciples a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary. He said, "There was a judge in a certain town who neither feared God nor respected any human being. And a widow in that town used to come to him and say, 'Render a just decision for me against my adversary.' For a long time the judge was unwilling, but eventually he thought, 'While it is true that I neither fear God nor respect any human being, because this widow keeps bothering me I shall deliver a just decision for her lest she finally come and strike me.'" The Lord said, "Pay attention to what the dishonest judge says.Will not God then secure the rights of his chosen ones who call out to him day and night? Will he be slow to answer them? I tell you, he will see to it that justice is done for them speedily. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth? (St Luke 18:1-8) 

What an extraordinary thing it is, the efficiency of prayer! Like a queen, it has access at all times to the Royal presence, and can get whatever it asks for. And it's a mistake to imagine that your prayer won't be answered unless you've something out of a book, some splendid formula of words, specially devised to meet this emergency. If that were true, I'm afraid I should be in a terribly bad position. You see, I recite the Divine Office, with a great sense of unworthiness, but apart from that I can't face the strain of hunting about in books for these splendid prayers-it makes my head spin. There are such a lot of them, each more splendid than the last; how am I to recite them all, or to choose between them? I just do what children have to do before they've learned to read; I tell God what I want quite simply, without any splendid turns of phrase, and somehow he always manages to understand me. For me, prayer means launching out of the heart towards God; it means lifting up one's eyes, quite simply, to heaven, a cry of grateful love, from the crest of joy or the trough of despair; it's a vast, supernatural force which opens out my heart, and binds me close to Jesus. (St Therese of the Child Jesus) 


Read whole post......

Monday, November 04, 2013

Receipt for Sainthood from St Therese

On a sabbath Jesus went to dine at the home of one of the leading Pharisees. He said to the host who invited him, "When you hold a lunch or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors, in case they may invite you back and you have repayment. Rather, when you hold a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous." (St Luke 14:12-14) 

I have noticed (and this is very natural) that the most saintly Sisters are the most loved. We seek their company; we render them services without their asking... On the other hand, imperfect souls are not sought out. No doubt we remain within the limits of religious politeness in their regard, but we generally avoid them, fearing lest we say something which isn't too amiable... This is the conclusion I draw from this: I must seek out in recreation, on free days, the company of the Sisters who are the least agreeable to me in order to carry out with regard to these wounded souls the office of the good Samaritan. A word, an amiable smile, often suffice to make a sad soul bloom; but it is not principally to attain this end that I wish to practice charity, for I know I would soon become discouraged: a word I shall say with the best intention will perhaps be interpreted wrongly. Also, not to waste my time, I want to be friendly with everybody (and especially with the least amiable Sisters) to give joy to Jesus and respond to the counsel He gives in the Gospel in almost these words: “When you give a dinner or a supper, do not invite your friends, or your brethren, or your relatives, or your rich neighbors, lest perhaps they also invite you in return, and a recompense be made to you. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; and blessed shall you be, because they have nothing to repay you with, and your Father who sees in secret will reward you” (cf. Lk 14,12-14; Mt 6,4-5) What banquet could a Carmelite offer her Sisters except a spiritual banquet of loving and joyful charity? As far as I am concerned, I know no other and I want to imitate Saint Paul who “rejoiced with those who rejoice” (Rm 12,15). It is true he wept with the afflicted and tears must sometimes appear in the feast I wish to serve, but I shall always try to change these tears into joy (Jn 16,20), since “the Lord loves a cheerful giver” (2Cor 9,7).
Read whole post......

Friday, November 01, 2013

Feats of All Saints and All Souls

Be you therefore perfect, as also your heavenly Father is perfect.(Matt 5:48) 

O my God, what unspeakable sufferings our souls have to endure because they have lost their liberty, and are not their own masters!  What tortures come on them through that!  I sometimes wonder how I can live through such agony of soul as I myself suffer.  God be praised who gives me His own life in my soul, so that I may escape from so deadly a death!  My soul has indeed received great strength from His Divine Majesty.  He has had compassion on my great misery, and has helped me.  Oh, what a distress it is for my soul to have to return to hold commerce with this world after having had its conversation in heaven!  To have to play a part in the sad farce of this earthly life!  And yet I am in a strait between two.  I cannot run away from this world.  I must remain in it till my discharge comes.  But, meantime, how keen is my captivity; how wretched in my own soul am I.  And one of my worst distresses is this, that I am alone in my exile.  All around me people seem to have found their aim and end in life in this horrible prison-house, and to have said, Soul, take thine ease.  But the life of my soul is a life of incessant trouble.  The cross is always on my shoulder; at the same time I surely make some progress.  God is the Soul of my soul.  He engulfs into Himself my soul.  He enlightens and strengthens my soul.  He attends to my soul night world, and to lay up their treasure in those things which God hath prepared for them that love Him.  May it please His Majesty that the great munificence with which He has dealt with my soul, miserable sinner that I am, may have some weight with some of those who read this, so that they may be strong and courageous to give up everything at once and most willingly for such a God! (Santa Teresa an Appreciation: On the Soul)

The souls of the just are in the hand of God, and no torment shall touch them. They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead; and their passing away was thought an affliction and their going forth from us, utter destruction. But they are in peace. For if before men, indeed, they be punished, yet is their hope full of immortality; Chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed, because God tried them and found them worthy of himself. As gold in the furnace, he proved them, and as sacrificial offerings he took them to himself. In the time of their visitation they shall shine, and shall dart about as sparks through stubble; They shall judge nations and rule over peoples, and the LORD shall be their King forever. Those who trust in him shall understand truth, and the faithful shall abide with him in love: Because grace and mercy are with his holy ones, and his care is with the elect. (Book of WIsdom 3:1-9)

Picture from public domain

Read whole post......

Friday, October 25, 2013

Year of Faith declared by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI, October 2012-2013

Today, on Monday 11th of February 2013, His Holiness Pope Benedict 16 announced his retirement at the end of February, 2013. Let us all pray for him and for the next Pope which will be elected afterwards. Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us! 

Read whole post......

Monday, October 21, 2013

On the love of neighbour

There are only two duties that our Lord requires of us, the love of God, and the love of our neighbour. And, in my opinion, the surest sign for discovering our love to God is our love to our neighbour. And be assured that the further you advance in the love of your neighbour, the further you are advancing in the love of God likewise. But, oh me, how many worms lie gnawing at the roots of our love to our neighbour! Self-love, self-esteem, fault-finding, envy, anger, impatience, scorn. I assure you I write this with great grief, seeing myself to be so miserable a sinner against all my neighbours. Our Lord, my sisters, expects works. Therefore when you see any one sick, compassionate her as if she were yourself. Pity her. Fast that she may eat. Wake that she may sleep. Again, when you hear any one commended and praised, rejoice in it as much as if you were commended and praised yourself. Which, indeed, should be easy, because where humility truly is, praise is a torment. Cover also your sister’s defects as you would have your own defects and faults covered and not exposed. As often as occasion offers, lift off your neighbour’s burden. Take it off her heart and on upon yourself. Satan himself would not be Satan any longer if he could once love his neighbour as himself. Endeavour, my daughters, all you can, to be affable to all. Demean yourselves so that all who have to do with you may love your conversation, so as to desire after your way of life. Let no one be affrighted or turned away from the life of virtue and religion by your gloom and morosity. This concerns religious women very much.(Santa Teresa an Appreciation)


Read whole post......

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Exaltation of the Holy Cross

'O Crux, Ave, Spes Unica' - 'Hail the Cross, our only hope' 

'...the life of a good religious man is a cross, but it is a cross that conducts him to Paradise'. Imitation of Christ 

Instead of reproaching Our Lord for having sent us this cross, I cannot fathom the depths of divine love which move Him so to treat us. God must love [my] father very dearly to sent him such suffering. (St Therese, Letters)
Read whole post......

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Our Lady's Birthday! What a beautiful feast on which to become the bride of Christ, baby Mary a day old presenting His little flower to little Jesus! On that day everything was little except the graces I received, and the peace and joy I felt when evening came and I gazed up at the starry heavens, where I would soon be united to my divine Bridegroom in everalsting happiness. From the time I awoke in the morning I was filled with peace, and it was in the peace of God which surpasseth all understanding (Phil 4; 7) that I pronounced my holy vows. At the close of this beautiful day I laid my wreath, as is the custom, at Our Lady's feet without any feeling of sadness, for I felt that time would not lessen my hapiness. O Jesus, I only ask Thee to give me peace!....Peace, and above all a love that knows no bounds. (St Therese, The Story of a Soul)
Read whole post......

Friday, August 02, 2013

Carmelite Saints we venerate in August
Read whole post......

Monday, July 22, 2013

St Mary Magdalen Penitent - click to read more

He who believes in Me, the works that I do he also shall do, and greater than these shall he do. (John 14:12)
Of the earlier life of Saint Mary Magdalen we know only that she was "a woman who was a sinner." From the depth of her degradation she raised her eyes to Jesus with sorrow, hope, and love. Covered with shame, she came to where Jesus was at table, and knelt behind Him. She said not a word, but bathed His feet with her tears, wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed them with humility. Then she poured on them costly ointment. The divine lips of her Saviour removed her reproach, spoke her absolution, and bade her go in peace. From that time on, she ministered to Jesus, sat at His feet, and listened to His words. She was one of the family of Bethany "whom Jesus so loved" that He raised her brother Lazarus from the dead. It happened that once again, on the eve of His Passion, she brought precious ointment, and this time, as His purified and beloved follower, poured it on His head; and we may say that the entire House of God is still filled with the fragrance of her anointing. Mary Magdalen stood with Our Lady and Saint John at the foot of the cross, representative of the many who have loved much because much has been forgiven them. To her, the first after His blessed Mother, and through her to His Apostles, Our Lord gave the certainty of His resurrection. When the faithful were scattered by persecution, the family of Bethany found refuge in the south of France. The cave in which Saint Mary Magdalen lived for thirty years is still seen, with a chapel on the mountaintop, in which she was caught up daily, like Saint Paul, to “visions and revelations of the Lord.” When her end drew near she was borne to a place still marked by a monument, where the holy Bishop Maximin awaited her; and when she had received her Lord, she peacefully fell asleep in death.

Read whole post......

Sunday, July 07, 2013

St John of the Cross Novena to Our Lady of Mt Carmel, 7-15th of July

Prayer for every day
Immaculate Virgin and Queen of Carmel, thou art the hope of the sufferer and the consolation of the afflicted. Look not upon my sins, but remember only that I am apoor soul redeemed by the Precious Blood of thy Son, and that my heart is sealed with thy holy scapular. Hear my prayer and if it be for the glory of God, thy honour and for the salvation of my soul, grant what I ask in this novena. Amen

July 7
First Day Prayer: The beauty of Carmel and the glory of Lebanon are given to Thee in thy Immaculate Conception, O Blessed Queen of Carmel! I also rise from the sea of this world, not like thee all pure and immaculate, but loaded with sin. Help me, look upon me with these eyes of mercy. Amen. Hail Mary (three times)

Flower of Carmel,
Blossoming vine
Splendour of heaven
Mother divine
None like to thee!
Mother of meekness
Peerless thou art
To the Carmelites
Favours impart,
Star of the sea!

July 8
Second Day Prayer:  I give thanks to thee, O Virgin Mother of Carmel, for the gift of the holy scapular, the sign of thy confraternity. O my Mother, make me worthy to wear that sacred livery and may my heart ever be pure, free from every stain of sin. Amen. Hail Mary (three times)

Flower of Carmel etc

July 9
Third Day Prayer: Virgin Mother of Carmel, remember me who am consecrated to thee by the holy scapular I place my trust in thee, O flower of Carmel, fruitful vine, ever Immaculate Queen, O Mother mild, implore thy Son to hear my prayer now and at the hour of my death. Amen. Hail Mary (three times).

Flower of Carmel etc 

July 10
Fourth Day Prayer: I thank thee, my Lady and Mother, for the gift of thy holy scapular. Thou knowest well my weakness and my malice, but I trust in thee and under thy protection I take refuge. O holy Mother of Mt Carmel, despise not my petition in my necessities, but deliver me from all dab=nger. Amen. Hail Mary (three times).

Flower of Carmel etc 

July 11
Fifth Day Prayer: Queen and Beauty of Carmel, thy glance is love, hope, and sweetness. As the rays of the sun colour the flowers, so also thy glance gives to the soul strength and beauty. May I remain ever before thee, my Mother, turn thine eyes of mercy on me. Amen. Hail Mary (three times).

Flower of Carmel etc 

July 12
Sixth Day Prayer: O my dear Mother of Carmel, I love thee more than I can express, more than my very soul can conceive. I reverence thee, I praise thee, O sacred Virgin, whose chaste womb bore the Son of the Most High God. Bless me and deliver me from all evil. Amen. Hail Mary (three times)

Flower of Carmel etc 

July 13
Seventh Day Prayer: Most loving Virgin of Carmel, I acknowledge gratefully thine immense goodness toward me, hear my prayer and after this exile, show unto me the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O most clement, O most loving, O most sweet Virgin Mary. Amen. Hail Mary (three times)

Flower of Carmel etc 

July 14
Eight Day Prayer: O Mother of Carmel, when my last hour shall sound, when I shall take thy holy scapular into my trembling hands, fill my heart with confidence in it, and do thou, my loving Mother, receive my soul and offer it to thy sweet Jesus. Amen. Hail Mary (three times)

Flower of Carmel etc 

July 15
Ninth Day Prayer: O Mary, most holy Mother of Carmel, Virgin of virgins, sanctuary of the Blessed Trinity, mirror of angels, assured refuge of sinners! have compassion on me in my suffering, listen to my sighs with clemency and appease the anger of thy Son. Amen. Hail Mary (three times)

Flower of Carmel etc

Text from 'Carmelite Devotions and Prayers'
Alternative Novena Prayer to Our Lady of Mount Carmel here
Read whole post......

Saturday, June 29, 2013

St Peter and St Paul, solemnity

'Simon, son of John, do you love me?...'Lord, you know everything, you know that I love thee'...'Feed my sheep' (John 21:17)

How did JESUS have love his disciples and why did he love them? It wasn't their human qualities that attracted Him; an infinite distance existed between them. He was knowledge, Eternal Wisdom; they were poor sinners - ignorant, filled with worldly thoughts. Yet, JESUS called them his friends, his brothers. He wants to open his Father's kingdom for them and see them reign with Him in this kingdom. He wants to die on a cross because He said: 'There is no greater love than to give one's life for those we love' (The Story of a Soul)

'Fight like a good soldier (which means making every effort in overcoming temptations, imperfections, addictions, giving always good example to others) and if sometimes thou fall through frailty, rise up again, with greater strength than before, confiding in My more abundant grace; but take great care thou yield not to any vain complacency and pride. Through this, many are led into error, and sometimes fall into incurable blindness. Let this fall of the proud, who foolishly rely on their own strength, serve thee for a warning, and keep thee always humble (Imitation of Christ book 3 ch 6)'

I understand why St Peter fell. He counted too much on the affection he felt for Our Lord, instead of relying on the strength of divine grace. I am quite sure that if he had said to Our Lord: 'Master, give me the courage to follow Thee even unto death,' he would have obtained the grace.
I wonder why Our Lord, knowing what would have happened, did not say to him: 'Ask Me for the grace to accomplish what you desire'? I think it was in order to teach us two lessons: firstly, that His visible presence did not teach the Apostles more than we can learn from the inspirations of grace; secondly, that having chosen St Peter to govern the Church, whose members would include so many sinners, he wished him to learn by experience what man is without the help of God. That is why Our Lord said to him before his fall: 'Thou being once converted, confirm thy brethren (Luke 22;32) i.e. tell them the story of your fall, and show them by you own experience how necessary it is for salvation to rely solely upon God. (St Therese, Conseils et Souvenirs).
Text inspirations from 'Through the Year with St Therese' and 'Just for Today - daily readings from St Therese and Imitations of Christ'
Read whole post......

Sunday, May 26, 2013


O MY GOD, Trinity whom I adore, help me to forget myself entirely that I may be established in You as still and as peaceful as if my soul were already in eternity. May nothing trouble my peace or make me leave You, I my Unchanging One, but may each minute carry me further into the depths of Your heaven, Your beloved dwelling place. May I never leave You there alone but be wholly present, my faith wholly vigilant, wholly adoring, and wholly surrendered to Your creative Action.
   O my Beloved Christ, crucified by love, I wish to be a bride for Your Heart; I wish to cover You with glory; I wish to love You....even to dying of it! But I feel my weakness, and I ask You "to clothe me with Yourself," to identify my soul with all the movements of Your soul, to overwhelm me, to possess me, to substitute Yourself for me that my life may be but radiance of Your Life. Come into me as Adorer, as Restorer, as Saviour.
   O Eternal Word, Word of my God, I want to spent my life listening to You, to become wholly teachable that I may learn all from You. Then, through all nights, all voids, all helpnessness, I want to gaze on You always and remain in Your great light. O my Beloved Star, so fascinate me that I may not withdraw from Your radiance.
   O consumating Fire, Spirit of Love, "come upon me," and create in my soul a kind of humanity for Him in which He can renew His whole Mystery. And You, O Father, bend lovingly over Your poor little creature; "cover her with Your shadow," seeing in her only the "Beloved in whom You are well pleased".
   O my Three, my All, my Beatitude, Infinite Solitude, Immensity in which I lose myself, I surrender myself to You as Your prey. Bury Yourself in me that I may bury myself in You until I depart to contemplate in Your light the abyss of Your greatness. (Bl Elizabeth of the Trinity, 1904, Personal notes)

Read whole post......

Sunday, May 19, 2013


O Holy Spirit, with everlasting wisdom you gently urge rational creatures who want to receive Your gifts, but You do not take away their liberty. You knock at all hearts, but You knock gently, urging each one to prepare to receive these gifts. Softly singing, You are the source of sweet tears. Rejoicing and lamenting, You strive ardently that everyone may be disposed to receive You. May the intellect admire, the will and memory understand Your immense goodness, O Holy Spirit, in infusing Yourself and all Your gifts into the soul! O Spirit proceeding from the Father and the Word, You infuse Yourself into the soul so gently that it does not understand You, and being not understood, Your ineffable gift is esteemed by few. Yet, besides Your goodness, You infuse into the soul the power of the Father, and the wisdom of the Son. The soul, having thus become powerful and wise is made fit to bear You within itself as a sweet Guest, cherishing You, that is, behaving in such a way that You take pleasure in it and do not leave it. (St Mary Magdalen dei Pazzi)
Read whole post......

Friday, May 17, 2013

Today is the day of canonization of St Therese which took place on 17th of May, 1925. Let us read this little fragment of her autobiography:

"If in the midst of our earthly combat and suffering the thought that God has called us out of the world gives us such joy, what will it not be in Heaven, where in eternal glory and endless rest, we shall see what an immense grace we received when we were chosen to dwell in God's house, the very gate of Heaven." (The Story of a Soul)

Read whole post......

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Good Shepherd Sunday - click to read

'Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep, Whoever enters by me will be saved, and will come in and go out and find pasture' (Jn 10:7) 

I also feel the desire to love the Lord alone and to find joy only in Him. (St Therese, The Story of a Soul)
Read whole post......

Friday, April 12, 2013

St Teresa of Jesus of the Andes

My Mother, I know you are my mother. Remember that I gave myself to you in your Immaculate Heart, keep me pure, a virgin. May it be my refuge, my hope, my consolation, my solitude. I place myself in your maternal arms, so you may put me in the arms of Jesus. I abandon myself to Him. May His holy will be done.
Thank you, my Mother, for having freed me from all dangers and for having made me spend my vacation well. Thanks, my Mother. My Mother, I would like tell you many things. But my language is so poor that it trembles in just telling you that I love you. My Mother, at your virginal feet I would love to sing praises, but my voice is so weak that I can only formulate a prayer. I have pain because, despite having asked and at the same time having mortified myself, I have not obtained my request that my father, Miguel and Luis make a retreat. But my God's will be done. ("God the Joy of My Life; Bl Teresa of the Andes" by Michael Griffin OCD)

Read whole post......

Thursday, April 04, 2013



This is the most excellent day, the happiest day of the whole year - the Paschal solemnity resounds with an unmistakable note of triumph; it is joy for the triumph of Christ, for His victory. "Pour forth upon us, O Lord, the spirit of Thy love, to make us of one heart." (Postcommunion Prayer). Without unity and mutual charity there can be no real Paschal joy. Every year Easter marks a time of renewal in our spiritual life, in our search for God; every year we reascend the path toward Him in novitate vitae, in newness of life (Rom 6:4)
"As long as I carry about with me these fragile members, give me the grace, O Lord, to cling to You, for he who adheres to the Lord is one spirit with Him" (St Augustine)
Easter Sunday Pope Francis Urbi et Orbi
Watch Urbi et Orbi with Vatican Player chosing 'video on demand'

Read whole post......

Easter with St Therese

"Why seek you the living with the dead? He is not here, but is risen" (Lk 24:5).
Celebrations! Even if the most important feasts do not come very often, my heart is brought to celebrate one every Sunday....That is God's feast, the feast of rest...The whole family goes to Mass (The Story of a Soul)

And they went out quickly from the sepulcher with fear and great joy, running to tell his disciples. And behold Jesus met them, saying: All hail. But they came up and took hold of his feet, and adored him.  (Mt 28:8, 9)
During the Passover of Our Lord, the women showed more courage than the apostles. (...) Undoubtedly, this  is why he allowed contempt to be their lot in life on earth, because he chose it for himself....It will be shown, in heaven, that his thoughts were not those of humankind, because the last will be the first (The Story of  a Soul)

Jesus saith to her: Do not touch me, for I am not yet ascended to my Father. But go to my brethren, and say to them: I ascend to my Father and to your Father, to my God and your God (Jn 20:17).
At times, we are so uncomfortable within ourselves we must quickly reach out. Our Lord doesn't force us to stay within ourselves; oftentimes, he allows us this discomfort so we can reach out. To resolve this, I reach out to Jesus and Mary by throwing myself into acts of charity (Advice and Memories)

And they said one to the other: Was not our heart burning within us, whilst he spoke in this way, and opened to us the scriptures? And rising up, the same hour, they went back to Jerusalem (Lk 24; 32, 33).
For a long time, I fed my soul with the knowledge of "pure flour" that I found in a book called Imitation. This was the only book I was comfortable with because I had not as yet found the hidden treasures in the Gospel. (...) When I was fourteen, given my interest in knowledge, the Lord found it necessary to combine that "pure flour" with plenty of "oil and honey" (The Story of a Soul)


At length he appeared to the eleven as they were at table: and he upbraided them with their incredulity and hardness of heart, because they did not believe them who had seen him after he was risen again. And he said to them: Go ye into the whole world, and preach the gospel to every creature (Mk 16:14-15)
God needs no person to do his divine work. But he does allow a talented gardener to raise  exotic and delicate plants by giving him the necessary knowledge but keeping the secret of their creation to himself. In the same way, Jesus wants to be helped in his divine gardening of souls (The Story of a Soul)


Now when it was late that same day, the first of the week, and the doors were shut, where the disciples were gathered together, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them: Peace be to you. And when he had said this, he shewed them his hands and his side. The disciples therefore were glad, when they saw the Lord. He said therefore to them again: Peace be to you. (....)And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them. Jesus cometh, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said: Peace be to you  (Jn 20: 19-26).
This joyous day [Sunday] which passes by all too quickly, has a tinge of sadness....One must start life over again the next day - work, study. My heart feels as if it is in exile on earth....I yearn for eternal rest in heaven, where Sundays never end, in my Father's house (The Story of a Soul)


Today the glorious Alleluia of Easter resounds. Today's Gospel from John emphasizes that on the evening of that day he appeared to the Apostles and "showed them his hands and his side" (Jn 20: 20), that is, the signs of the painful passion with which his Body was indelibly stamped, even after the Resurrection. Those glorious wounds, which he allowed doubting Thomas to touch eight days later, reveal the mercy of God who "so loved the world that he gave his only Son" (Jn 3: 16).
This mystery of love is at the heart of the liturgy today, the Second Sunday of Easter, dedicated to the devotion of Divine Mercy. As a gift to humanity, which sometimes seems bewildered and overwhelmed by the power of evil, selfishness and fear, the Risen Lord offers his love that pardons, reconciles and reopens hearts to love. It is a love that converts hearts and gives peace. How much the world needs to understand and accept Divine Mercy!  Lord, who reveal the Father's love by your death and Resurrection, we believe in you and confidently repeat to you today: Jesus, I trust in you, have mercy upon us and upon the whole world. (Regina Caeli of the 3 April 2005, the day following the death of Pope John-Paul II)

Group photo of young Karol Wojtyla (arrow) - posing together with other altar boys and their Parish Priest, photo taken in Karol's hometown of Wadowice, circa 1932 

In his intimate life, God "is love," (1Jn 4,8) the essential love shared by the three divine Persons: personal love is the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of the Father and the Son. Therefore he "searches even the depths of God," (1Cor 2,10) as uncreated Love-Gift.... Here we have an inexhaustible treasure of the reality and an inexpressible deepening of the concept of person in God, which only divine Revelation makes known to us. At the same time, the Holy Spirit, being consubstantial with the Father and the Son in divinity, is love and (uncreated) gift from which derives as from its source... the gift of grace to human beings through the whole economy of salvation. As the Apostle Paul writes: "God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit which has been given to us" (Rm 5,5). (Bl John Paul II)

Word yet to be created, Word of God!
Oh, you know, I love you, Divine Jesus!
The Spirit of Love embraces me with its fire.
By loving you I attract the Father,
My weak heart keeps  him in me without expectation;
Oh Trinity, you are prisoners of my love (St Therese Poem 17).


Read whole post......

Sunday, March 31, 2013

As St Therese says, “...as long as you recite the Rosary, God will not abandon the world, because it is powerful on His Heart”. 

Italian organisation CENTRO CULTURALE LEPANTO has launched 1 million Rosary crusade utnil the end of conclave. Please sign up for the prayers HERE. Let us pray this Lent for the new Pope.
From Papal Encyclicals online, the Pope Paul VI Encyclical 'Election of the Roman Pontiff' to read HERE , and from Vatican website, Encyclical of the Pope John Paul II 'Universi Dominici Gregis' HERE and the motu proprio of Pope Benedict 16 'Normas Nonnullas' HERE
The list of Cardinal Elelctors HERE
News from Vatican HERE
The first meeting of General Congregation is scheduled on Monday the 4th of February which means the Cardinals may vote for the starting day of Conclave on Monday see here
Latest news, conclave is scheduled on Tuesday, March 12th in the afternoon according to Vatican News

Cardinal Electors group photo (after Rinnovamento Nella Fede Cattolica), and one of them may be elected for the next Pope.

Voting explained:

Smoke times: 12th of March, only one ballot and results around 7-7:30pm (Rome local time). Since 13th of March, four rounds of voting. We may see first smoke in the morning at around 11:30-noon and in the evening, between 6pm  and 7pm.
The smoke may be watched directly with Vatican player
Some of the history of Papal conclaves HERE

13th of March 2013 - 18.05 London time - HABEMUS PAPAM!

The new Pope is Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, Jesuit from Argentina, Pope Francis I, the name taken possibly after great Jesuit Saint, St Francis Xavier.
Update: I was wrong, the new pope took the name Francis in honor of St. Francis of Assisi because he is a lover of the poor, according to Vatican spokesman the Rev. Tom Rosica said. Also, the new pope should be known as Pope Francis, not Pope Francis I.

First Urbi et Orbi
I hope and pray the new Pope, Pope Francis will be pleasing to God. I have devotion to St Ignatius, the founder of Jesuits, as he is my patron Saint. AMDG 

Prayer for the Sovereign Pontiff V. 
Oremus pro Pontifice nostro Franciscum. 
R. Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum eius. (Ps 40:3) 
Pater Noster, Ave Maria,
Deus, omnium fidelium pastor et rector, famulum tuum Franciscus, quem pastorem Ecclesiæ tuæ præesse voluisti, propitius respice: da ei, quæsumus, verbo et exemplo, quibus præest, proficere: ut ad vitam, una cum grege sibi credito, perveniat sempiternam. 
Per Christum, Dominum nostrum. Amen. V. 

Let us pray for Francis, our Pope. 
R. May the Lord preserve him, and give him life, and make him blessed upon the earth, and deliver him not up to the will of his enemies. (Ps 40:3) 
Our Father, Hail Mary 
O God, Shepherd and Ruler of all Thy faithful people, look mercifully upon Thy servant Francis, whom Thou hast chosen as shepherd to preside over Thy Church. Grant him, we beseech Thee, that by his word and example, he may edify those over whom he hath charge, so that together with the flock committed to him, may he attain everlasting life. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

"Yesterday, it would seem, we received a Pope who is truly a servants of the servants of God as the world best knows it: a man who is not afraid to approach the weak, the sick and the poor, who shuns pomposity and vanity and, as we soon learned, chose to take the bus with the other cardinals back to the Domus Sanctae Marthae, instead of taking the limousine that was waiting.
But that humility should not be taken for weakness or even simplicity. As his chosen papal name indicates, underneath the simplicity of his appearance and actions, not unlike his two immediate predecessors, lies a person of great strength and faith. Whereas Benedict XVI was the professor who taught us about the faith, Francis will be the older brother who walks with us and shows us the way in love and charity." comment on Papal election from In Coelo et in Terra blog

Read whole post......

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Feast of St Joseph

His Holiness, Pope Francis praying before the statue of Our Lady with Child Jesus at the end of Inaugural Mass of his Pontificate.

Read whole post......

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Monday, February 11, 2013

Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us! - click here for link to previous posts

No sudden splendour broke the grey
And even tenor of your days
No ecstasy made you forget
Your poverty in its bright rays.

Mary, the lowliest can tread
With confidence the path you trod
Your life the bright and shining star
That leads the wayfarer to God
(St Therese, Poems)

Read whole post......

Friday, February 01, 2013

The Presentation of Our Lord

When the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord...and they offered a sacrifice according to what is stated in the law of the Lord (Lk 2:22-24) 

Jesus, your arms are the elevator which will lift me to heaven! To achieve this, I must not grow; just the opposite, I must remain small, I must become smaller and smaller. Oh Lord, you have gone beyond my expectations, and I want to sing of your mercies (St Therese, The Story of a Soul)
Read whole post......

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Conversion of St Paul

'Let Thy name be praised, not mine, let Thy work be extolled, not mine; let Thy holy name be blessed, but to me nothing be attributed of the praises of men. Thou art my glory; Thou art the joy of my heart. In Thee will I glory and rejoice all the day; but for myself I will glory in nothing but in my infirmities (2 Cor.12; 5) (Imitation of Christ, B 3 ch 11) 

Someone had said to her: "You are a Saint!" "No, I am not a saint, nor have my deeds ever been those of a saint. I am a very little soul whom God has overwhelmed with graces. In Heaven you will see that I am speaking the truth" St Therese, Novissima Verba
Read whole post......

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus - click to read more

Luke 2:21
And after eight days were accomplished, that the child should be circumcised, his name was called JESUS, which was called by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

At the name of Jesus every knee should bow of those that are in heaven, on earth and under the earth: And that every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the father. O Lord, our Lord, how wonderful is Thy Name in the whole earth! (Introit of the Mass, Phillip. 2:10,11)

Read whole post......

January, the Month dedicated to the Most Holy Name of Jesus - click to listen to Iesu Dulcis Memoria, Jesus, Sweet Memory

O taste, and see that the Lord is sweet: blessed is the man who hopeth in Him (Ps. 33:9)

Jesus, the very thought of Thee,
With sweetness fills my breast;
But sweeter far Thy Face to see
And in Thy presence rest.
Nor voice can sing, nor heart can frame,
Nor can the memory find
A sweeter sound than Thy blest Name,
O Saviour of mankind!
O Hope of every contrite heart,
O joy of all the meek,
To those who fall, how kind Thou art,
How good to those who seek.
My tongue and words cannot express,
Their usefulness is low
But having felt is to believe,
sweet Jesus' love to know.
Jesus, our only joy be Thou,
As Thou our prize wilt be;
O Jesus, be our glory now
And through eternity.
(Jesus, Sweet Memory, Vespers hymn for the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus - 
St. Bernard of Clairvaux)

Adopted from Angelqueen

Read whole post......